Browsed by
Author: Ilona Bray

Ilona Bray is an attorney who gave up the active practice of law to edit and author books and articles for Nolo. Her working background includes both solo immigration practice and working or volunteering as an immigration attorney with nonprofit organizations in Seattle and California.
Once Valentine’s Day Is Over, Couples’ Fights Over Home Buying or Selling Can Begin

Once Valentine’s Day Is Over, Couples’ Fights Over Home Buying or Selling Can Begin

Traditionally, the busy season in real estate starts around April, though it’s been moving earlier in various parts of the United States. That leaves Valentine’s Day fairly clear for couples to look into each others’ eyes and dream of nesting in some cozy new abode. Enjoy it while it lasts, because according to a recent Harris Poll, the vast majority of couples argue like crazy over the course of buying or selling a home. Okay, so the words “like crazy”…

Read More Read More

Disney Action Against School Shows That Small Nonprofit Fundraisers Don’t Fly Under Radar

Disney Action Against School Shows That Small Nonprofit Fundraisers Don’t Fly Under Radar

It’s no fun being the nonprofit board member or volunteer who tells others, “We can’t do that, it’s a violation of [someone’s copyright, or trademark, or other rights].” I’ve had to be that person, and the usual response is, “Oh, come on, we’re hardly making any money anyway,” or “You seriously think anyone is going to notice?” Guess what. Disney notices. It’s all described here, in “Disney fined a PTA for showing the Lion King at a fundraising event to…

Read More Read More

“Florida Woman,” and the Reality of Fake Lawyers

“Florida Woman,” and the Reality of Fake Lawyers

Sometimes I feel like a lecturing parent, telling people that before hiring a lawyer they should check references, ask lots of questions, and check the person’s state bar membership. That’s particularly true in the immigration law setting, where a vulnerable population and lack of oversight (or interest) from law enforcement has led to all manner of scams and ripoffs. But then a news report like this one recently out of Tampa comes along. (And further solidifies Florida’s status as the…

Read More Read More

Is Julian Castro Suggesting We Amend U.S. Law to Open the Borders?

Is Julian Castro Suggesting We Amend U.S. Law to Open the Borders?

As anyone who watched or heard snippets of the first Democratic presidential debate likely knows, candidate Julián Castro, former mayor of San Antonio, Texas, proposed a repeal of the portion of U.S. law (8 U.S.C. § 1325) that makes it a crime to cross the border into the U.S. without authorization. People found guilty of a violation under § 1325 can currently be fined up to $5,000 (under the terms of 18 U.S.C. Section 3571) and/or sentenced to a maximum…

Read More Read More

White House Thinks Joining Family in the U.S. Is a “Random Chance” Path to a Green Card!?

White House Thinks Joining Family in the U.S. Is a “Random Chance” Path to a Green Card!?

The White House’s recent proposal for radically restructuring the U.S. immigration system is widely considered a non-starter, unlikely to draw Congressional interest, much less lead to legislation. Nevertheless, it has filled the public airwaves with generalizations about immigration law that are just plain wrong. (And they’re not getting any more correct for having been oft repeated.) I’m not talking about the philosophy behind the old or proposed new immigration policy, nor about what statistics indicate about the benefits of immigrants…

Read More Read More